Research Collaborations

Research collaborations

The University’s Texas Strategic Partnership emerged from research relationships developed through the Government sponsored Texas-UK Collaborative, and research collaborations remain at the heart of the partnership.

As the Texas partnership has grown, long-established research relationships in Medicine, Life Sciences and Engineering have been joined by collaborations in English, History, Business, Politics, Law, Biological Sciences, Health Science, Social Work, Physics, Computer Science, and Heritage Languages.

Fostered and supported by dedicated funding and an intensive programme of researcher interactions, these collaborations bring together world-leading academics whose research synergies and complementary expertise have combined to deliver new research projects, joint grant applications, new academic networks, joint conferences and conference papers and co-authored journal submissions on both sides of the Atlantic.

Read some of our research case studies below.

Electrical Engineering

Grazia Todeschini

Dr Grazia Todeschini from the College of Engineering was awarded an Erasmus+ travel grant to develop a collaboration with colleagues in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UT Austin.

Building on shared interests in photovoltaic accommodation limits on distribution feeders, control algorithms for distributed energy resource management systems and voltage regulation algorithms, their research examines different methods to limit power quality disturbances in electrical systems.

Two papers based on this work will be presented at the 2018 General Meeting of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) Power and Energy Society, and three further papers are under review for publication in the IEEE Transactions and IET journals.

Whilst in Austin Dr Todeschini also delivered a series of lectures, laboratory classes and research seminars, and was invited to serve on three of the Department’s doctoral advising committees. Since returning from Texas she has also acted as a mentor for students participating in Invent for the Planet, a Texas A&M University-led intensive design experience hosted by Swansea’s College of Engineering.

Reprints and Revivals

Eoin Price

Dr Eoin Price from the Department of English Literature and Creative Writing was awarded a Texas Collaboration Funding Award to develop a research collaboration with colleagues at Texas A&M University.

Texas A&M’s expertise in early modern book history complements Dr Price’s interest in the study of reprints which, despite being essential to our understanding of plays, remain relatively under-researched. Dr Price was able to engage with book history experts, participate in a book history workshop, and deliver a paper on reprints and revivals which has been solicited for publication in a forthcoming special issue of the journal Shakespeare Bulletin. Dr Price’s principal collaborator at A&M is renowned book historian Dr Laura Estill, a contributor to his planned essay collection, Reprints and Revivals of Renaissance Drama.

Following his visit, Dr Price successfully applied for a Research Fellowship at UT Austin’s Harry Ransom Center which will allow him to undertake work in its Performing Arts archive for his next project, Early Modern Drama and the Jacobean Aesthetic. There, he will work with materials - such as eighteenth century Drury Lane Theatre prompt-books, playbills and print images - to uncover the forgotten history of plays which were once extremely popular but are rarely studied or performed today.

Data Visualization

Bob Laramee

The results of ongoing research between Computer Scientists at Swansea University and the University of Houston have been published in the journal Computers and Graphics.

The paper, authored by Swansea’s Dr Bob Laramee, Dr Guoning Chen, Lei Zhang and Duong Nguyen from the University of Houston, and colleagues at Mississippi State University, focuses on enhanced vector field visualization via Lagrangian accumulation.

Their shared research interests focus on data visualization, techniques which allow and support the visual exploration, analysis and presentation of large collections of data. Using the power of both commodity computer graphics and the human visual system, data visualization can summarize thousands, millions or even billions of numbers and generate meaningful pictures which provide far more insight than can be achieved by a looking at a large spreadsheet.

The collaboration between Dr Laramee and Dr Chen dates back to 2009 and, together with colleagues, they have published eleven journal papers and two book chapters, and have presented eight joint conference papers. Their most recent book chapter features in the fourth edition of Topological Methods in Data Analysis and Visualization, a biennial publication featuring cutting-edge research on the application of topological methods in scientific visualization

Oil Prices, Financial Liquidity and Geopolitical Risk

Hany Abdel Latif

The global interrelationship between oil prices, financial liquidity and geopolitical risk is the focus of a new research collaboration between Dr Hany Abdel-Latif from the School of Management and Prof Mahmoud El-Gamal from the Department of Economics at Rice University in Houston.

Their research concluded that new waves of high oil prices are unlikely, despite the probable continuation of high global financial liquidity and heightened geopolitical risk which have, in the past, driven oil price rises. Taking their analysis further, they considered the prospects for economic growth in oil-dependent economies and concluded that planned increases in domestic investment to boost economic performance are unlikely to prove successful.

Their findings, published on the Social Science Research Network (SSRN), formed the basis of an Economic Research Form policy brief and were presented at the Economic Research Forum (ERF) annual conference in Egypt. Read more.

Fulbright Commission Logo

Academi Hywel Teifi 

In 2016 Prof Tudur Hallam from the University’s Academi Hywel Teifi was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to allow him to spend seven months at the University of Houston.

His Fulbright-funded project explored the ways in which minority languages, cultures and literatures are suppressed and revitalised.

Working with the University of Houston’s Professor Nicolas Kanellos, his research explored the similarities between the Welsh/English dynamic in Wales and the Spanish/English dynamic in Texas, as well as the similarities between Prof Kanellos’ work in recovering the US Hispanic Literary heritage and that of Welsh scholars such as Swansea University’s Saunders Lewis.

His period as Visiting Fulbright Professor at the University of Houston ended in March 2017, and he ended his stay in the US with a week at Harvard University's Department of Celtic Languages and Literatures where he was invited to deliver a Mahindra Humanities Center Seminar on Celtic Literature and Culture entitled: "The poetics of biculturalism: lessons from Wales: Dylan Thomas and Saunders Lewis".

Energy Safety

A team of researchers led by Professor Andrew Barron from Swansea University's Energy Safety Research Institute is working on a number of research collaborations which are helping to minimize the environmental impact of fossil fuels.

Working with colleagues at Rice University, Houston, the group has discovered a more environmentally friendly method of carbon-capture using Buckminsterfullerene (also known as “Buckyballs”) that could help to reduce the impact of greenhouse gases by drawing carbon dioxide emissions from industrial flue gases and natural gas wells. Read more.

In other research with academics from Rice University, the University of Bristol and the University of Nice Sophia Antipolis, the group has also developed a new class of water-repelling nanomaterials, inspired by the lotus leaf, which could be a "green" replacement for costly, hazardous fluorocarbons commonly used for superhydrophobic applications such as waterproofing ships and other marine vessels. Read more.

UT Austin

College of Human and Health Science

Professor Sue Jordan from the College of Human and Health Science received a Texas Collaboration Funding Award to develop a collaborative research project with colleagues at UT Austin.

The project will examine the feasibility, reliability and validity of innovative multiparametric epidermal sensor systems developed by engineers at UT Austin.

These state-of-the-art sensors can be used to monitor temperature, respiratory rate, hydration status and sweating, electrical activity in the heart, brain and muscles (normally measured through EEG, ECG and EMG tests), and blood glucose concentrations (which are currently measured by finger pricks and blood samples).

Prof Jordan leads Swansea University’s Medicines Management group which will work with colleagues from UT’s Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics to test the devices in an audit of interest, with a view to nurse-led clinical trials in Wales and South Africa.

If successful, these patches could transform patient care by allowing tests normally carried out in a clinical environment to take place in patients’ homes, communities and other settings.




Professor Paul Rees and Professor Huw Summers from Swansea University’s Multidisciplinary Nanotechnology Centre have long-established research relationships in Texas.

Together with colleagues located in the Texas Medical Center in Houston, the world's largest medical center, they are working on the development of innovative new techniques for treating cancer tumors.

Their extensive research network encompasses world-leading nanomedicine and bioengineering researchers from both Houston Methodist Research Institute (HMRI) and Baylor College of Medicine, with whom they have co-authored over ten research papers.

In collaboration with colleagues at HMRI’, Profs Summers and Rees are investigating the use of nanoparticles as delivery vectors to deliver therapeutic drugs specifically to tumor sites. Such delivery could significantly minimise drug side effects, while the design of the nanoparticles with material properties will enable a delayed release of the therapeutic, allowing for the transit to the tissue requiring treatment.

Also in the Texas Medical Center, a research collaboration with Swansea alumnus Dr Matthew Ware and Professor Stephen Curley at Baylor College of Medicine is assessing the effect of radio frequency radiation induced hyperthermia in cancer cells. This can alter the cancer cell's state, making it more susceptible to therapeutic intervention.  

If successful, these research collaborations will provide a breakthrough in the way that cancer tumors are treated, saving patient lives and extending life expectancy for cancer suffers.

Dr Luca Trenta

Politics and International Relations

A Swansea University Texas Collaboration Funding Award supported Dr Luca Trenta from the Department of Politics and International Relations to undertake collaborative research with colleagues at Texas A&M University.

The collaboration, in conjunction with colleagues from Texas A&M’s Bush School of Government and Public Service, focuses on the military effectiveness of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (drones).

To date the collaboration has so far resulted in the establishment of a research network of international experts from the UK, Europe and the USA and a joint workshop held at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). A series of joint grant proposals are in development to facilitate further joint research on the topic.


David Britton

Creative Writing

Professor David Britton is an award-winning dramatist, director and dramaturge, and the Director of Creative Writing at Swansea University.

Supported by a College of Arts and Humanities Texas Fellowship, he is working on a multidisciplinary collaborative research project on St Francis of Assisi and Middle-East reconciliation with colleagues at the University of Texas at Austin and Texas A&M University.

As part of the University’s 2014 Texas Research Excellence Showcase he directed a group of students at Texas A&M University in the performance of an excerpt of his Dylan Thomas inspired play, Chelsea Dreaming. Performed in the week of the Dylan Thomas centenary, this was one of a number of Showcase events focusing on the Swansea born poet.

Energy Safety Research Institute


Part of a global energy safety network with strong links to Texas, Swansea University’s Energy Safety Research Institute (ESRI) is the UK's first dedicated centre for research into energy safety.

A £38million collaboration with BP, ESRI is a constituent member of the Global Energy Safety Institute  (founded in Houston, Texas in 2011), a sister Institute of the Energy and Environmental Systems Institute  at Rice University in Houston, and an associate of the National Corrosion Research Centre at Texas A&M University.

Housed in state-of-the-art premises on the University’s new Bay Campus, ESRIl concentrates elements of the University’s energy research, in particular its long-term strengths in petroleum and chemical processing – particularly in computational science (rock fracture modelling and hydraulic fracturing) and corrosion.